Drugs may be the road to nowhere, but at last, they’re the scenic route
‘Health for Justice. Justice for Health’, the theme for International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking 2019, highlights that justice and health are two sides of the same coin when it gets to addressing drug problems. You’ve probably heard that drugs are harmful to you, but what does that mean and why are they bad?
Drugs are chemicals that alter the way a person’s body works. Some are medicines that treat people when doctors prescribe them. Many have no medicinal use or benefits.
It’s not arduous to find drugs, and sometimes it may look like everyone’s doing them or wanting you to ingest them. But as with anything that appears too good to be true, there are downsides and dangers to taking drugs. (1)
A puff of this, and the world changes into a colorful kaleidoscope of dancing patterns and waves of sound; a sip of that, and the muscles in your body rest like jelly. We know various drugs make us feel the world around us in very different ways and their after-effects are usually nowhere near as pleasant as the instant results they produce. So what exactly are these drugs doing to the brain to arouse these feelings?
When taken regularly by swallowing, inhaling, or injecting, abused drugs discover their way into the bloodstream. From there, they travel to the brain and other parts of the body. In the brain, drugs may increase or dull the senses, shift how alert or sleepy people feel, and sometimes reduce the physical pain.
Because of the way these drugs work on the brain, they hit the ability to make sound choices and healthy decisions. Even drinking causes people more likely to get involved in dangerous situations, like driving under the influence.
Although things can feel good at first, they can create a lot of harm to the body and brain. Drinking alcohol, smoking or using tobacco, using illegal drugs, even sniffing glue all ruin the human body. (2)
Cigarettes, Alcohol, and Marijuana:
Cigarettes and alcohol are two other kinds of legal drugs. Smoking and excessive drinking are not good for adults and are off-limits for kids. Marijuana is generally an illegal drug, but some states enable doctors to prescribe it to people for certain illnesses, and some have passed laws making it legal to sell marijuana to adults for personal use.
Marijuana isn’t seen as being physically or chemically addictive, but many health experts agree that it can be psychologically addictive. Approximately 10 percent of people who use marijuana will become addicted to it, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. (3)
When people speak about a “drug problem,” they normally mean abusing legal drugs or using illegal drugs, such as marijuana, ecstasy, cocaine, LSD, crystal meth, and heroin to get “high.”
Health effects of using illegal drugs:
- Cocaine: Risk of heart attack, stroke, and seizures even in a kid or teen
- Ecstasy: Risk of liver malfunction and heart failure
- Inhalants: Risk of injury to heart, lungs, liver, and kidneys from long-term use
- Marijuana: Risk of impairment in memory, learning, problem-solving and concentration; risk of psychosis such as schizophrenia, hallucination or paranoia later in life connected with early and regular use
- Methamphetamine: Risk of psychotic reactions from long-term use or high doses
- Opioids: Risk of respiratory trouble or death from overdose
- Electronic cigarettes (vaping): Exposure to harmful things similar to exposure from cigarette smoking; risk of nicotine dependence
While using drugs, people are also less able to do well in school, sports, and other activities. It’s often more difficult to think clearly and make good decisions. People can do dumb or dangerous things that could maltreat them or other people when they use drugs. (4)
Why Do People Use Illegal Drugs?
Sometimes kids and teens try drugs to chime in with a group of friends or they might be interested or just bored. Someone may use illicit drugs for many reasons, but often because they support the person to escape from the truth for a while.
A drug might tentatively make someone who is sad or upset feel better or forget about problems. But this escape remains only until the drug wears off.
Drugs don’t answer for the problems, of course. And using drugs often creates other problems on top of the problems the person had in the first place. Somebody who practices drugs can become dependent on them, or addicted. This means that the person’s body grows so accustomed to having this drug that he or she can’t function well without it.
Once someone is addicted, it’s very difficult to stop taking drugs. Stopping can cause withdrawal symptoms, such as vomiting, sweating, and tremors. These sick feelings last until the person’s body gets adapted to being drug-free again. (5)
Changes found in the drug addiction person:
If someone is using drugs, you might see changes in how the person resembles or acts. Here are some of those signs, but it’s essential to remember that depression or another problem could be creating these changes.
Somebody using drugs might:
- Lose interest in school
- Change friends to hang out with kids who practice drugs
- Become low-spirited, negative, irritable, or worried all the time
- Ask to be left alone a lot
- Have trouble focusing
- Sleep a lot (maybe even in class)
- Get in fights
- Have red or inflamed eyes
- Lose or gain weight
- Cough a lot
- Have a runny nose all of the time (6)
How to overcome drug addiction:
Several kinds of treatment are possible for drug addiction. The two main types are behavioral (treating a person change behaviors) and pharmacological (helping a person by using medicine).
Experts in drug treatment educate people on how to live without drugs dealing with cravings, avoiding conditions that could lead to drug use, and preventing and controlling relapses.
Effective responses to the world drug problem need inclusive and accountable foundations of criminal justice, health, and social services to work hand in hand to implement integrated solutions, in line with the international drug control conventions, human rights responsibilities and the Sustainable Development Goals. (7)
“Addiction is a disease and must be treated like
we treat other diseases”
Click here, To know more about the usage of drugs.